Forward for “Contending for the Heart”
I have known Jim and Shirley Ertel from a distance for decades. But it has been my pleasure to have them on my staff since 2004. During that time I’ve seen firsthand how they interact with others and I’m pleased to say they live what they preach. I’ve been in their home and have met their children and grandchildren and they have fruit that testifies to the truths in this book.
As Jim brings out in this book, no one on their deathbed wishes they had worked more or had accumulated more things. Failures in relationships are always our biggest regret. I don’t believe this is accidental. We have an enemy going about seeking to destroy relationships with those we love the most.
There is an all out assault against the family. And the friction between parents and children is intensified today by a world that doesn’t support traditional moral values. Parents are often overwhelmed and feel helpless.
In this book, Jim uses an easy to read narrative style to communicate fundamental Bible truths, just as Jesus did. These stories will touch your heart, inspire you, and convict you as they did me when I read them.
Jamie and I have had more problems with our children than most parents. I’ve often prayed and sought the Lord about what I could have done differently and I’ve received more insight from Jim’s book than any other I’ve read on the subject.
In my case, it wasn’t an issue of a lack of love or effort. I gave parenting everything I had. But as with everything in life, good intentions are not enough. There are right and wrong ways of doing things. I believe Jim has hit upon the core of raising godly children.
As you read this book, let the Holy Spirit reveal these truths to you. Resist the tendency of pride that would only have you focus on what is wrong with your children and let the Lord speak to you about your own heart. We can’t fix in others what is broken in ourselves.
I pray the Lord would touch your heart as you read this book and contend for the heart of your child.
- Andrew Wommack